Fall Kraut Making--6 WEEK UPDATE

Discussion in 'Canning & Storage' started by chef willie, Sep 24, 2014.

  1. chef willie

    chef willie Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I decided to put a glass jug given to me by a buddy to good use as a crock. 10 pounds of cabbage total, about 4 big heads, and half a head of red cabbage for color. Hopefully, next year I can grow big heads of cabbage to use as, IMO, the commercially available cabbage is pretty dismal. Almost white in color, with very little green leaf but, it is what it is. I used 4 tablespoons of canning/pickling salt in total spread out as I shredded. The initial juice production was very weak. I tamped, squeezed and then pounded into the crock adding what, to me, looked good in caraway seeds, whole mustard seeds and some chili arbols layered in the crock. Even after an overnight rest in the cool shop I still had to add 2 quarts of brine to top off and cover the cabbage. The ratio on the added brine was 1 tablespoon salt to one quart of water. As I have in the past I used the gallon zip-lock baggie filled with brine method to weigh down the cabbage. After 4 days all looks well and some bubbling is evident creeping up the sides. YEA!! So, about another 4 weeks for a taste test.....Willie

    After 6 weeks of being waiting The Kraut, while still young, is getting rave reviews from pals. The Chili Arbols I put in have given it a spicy kick and the half head or red cabbage has turned it a nice pink. So, with no further BS here's the update pics. The jar WAS full to the top....that lower level is after filling requests. Guys at the bar were eating it cold with beers!!

    after overnight

    after 4 days

    Last edited: Oct 30, 2014
  2. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Looks gook Willie.... I'd eat it.... :thumbsup:
  3. chef willie

    chef willie Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Thanks Dave...it's turning out spectacular for only 6 weeks of age.....Willie
  4. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Better get some brats mashed taters and sautéed apples (butter and bourbon or Captain Morgans is a good choice for the apples) ready!! Got myself drooling now!
  5. squirrel

    squirrel Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    That is beautiful Willie! You're right, the store bought cabbage is very sad. My neighbor gave me some she grew in her garden back in March and I made kraut with it. I didn't have to add one drop of brine. The fresher it is the more moisture it has. I also put caraway seeds in mine, just a bit, but I love that flavor. Hugs!!! Cheryl
  6. chef willie

    chef willie Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Roger that, Case....just happen to have some of my recently made Kielbasa or the Andouille handy. Love sauteed apples in Fall, might have to invest in some Capt Morgans though. GF has fallen in love with the apple fritters for dinner with some bacon on the side. I take my scratch leftover pancake batter home from Sunday work and do some up. Growing up a Catholic kid with meatless Fridays that was the meal G'ma would make usually.....butter and maple syrup over mine....pure Heaven.
    Yes.....totally agree. No garden for us this year due to a move BUT I'm thinking a huge head or two next season just for kraut making. The above batch has both caraway & mustard seeds. Grandma always added caraway to kraut, even the store bought stuff and sometimes would switch to using barley. Any suggestion on a variety of cabbage that would make the bestest kraut? Thanks for the comments.....Regards, Willie
  7. squirrel

    squirrel Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Oregon State University recommends these varieties for your area:

    Early: Parel, Primax, Farao, Tendersweet, Gonzales, Surprise.
    Main season: Golden Acre, Bravo, Charmant, Cambria, Invento.
    Late fall, winter: Danish Ballhead, Storage Hybrid #4, Blue Thunder.
    Red: Ruby Perfection, Red Acre.
  8. chef willie

    chef willie Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    JEEZ.....I feel sheepish now. I'm in Oregon, you're in Georgia...lol.....and you're quoting the OSU site to me, which I have bookmarked for monthly gardening advice even. Thanks so much for the research....I will pursue the info and get me some seeds to start.....Willie
  9. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I am so sorry to be late here! LOL..... honest to goodness the funny stories on making kraut from when I was a kid.....LOL Great memories.... Pop made some in the garage, they dog would sleep out in the rain so she could breathe...LOL

    We obviously have a later season here. Cabbage like brocoli and cauliflower are the winter garden. Comes in, in November/December/January. I assume since its because of the rainfall, water volumn in the soil, the cabbage is big and heavy, and the variety we would always grow was "Rio verda" or something like that. The cabbage was always as big as a basketball and extra sweet......  Course Pop's cauliflower heads were big as basketballs too and HUGE brocolii. But I digress..... That rio verda cabbage was totally awesome stuff.

    It gets the offical Foamheart 5 gold stars.

    Chef I love the way the red cabbage bled into the green. Great job!!
  10. chef willie

    chef willie Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Thanks Kevin....of course the original posting was weeks ago so this was just an update to entice folks to make some. I'll have to look into that variety as well....your info will get posted into my gardening folder as a memory peg as I have little memory cells left to keep things stored I wanna remember <grin> Ya know....the GF said she could smell it after a few days but I could stick my head over the jug and smelt nothing but a vague essence of fermentation.....Oh well
  11. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Chef I heard a comedian the other night say it right.

    "I understand my mind is like a computer storing data, my problem is I can't find the delete key!"

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